Sometimes a Yoga Teacher, Always a Student
The practice of Ashtanga is hard, gritty, and anything but easy. So my focus is on inspiring students to keep getting on the mat every day, even when they feel physically (and sometimes emotionally) drained.
I put the spiritual practice of Ashtanga front and center. The traditions and lineage are integral to your practice. By inspiring students to develop their spiritual practice, I hope to empower them to take on more responsibilities.
Currently, there is a lot of talk about what yoga teachers can do to make yoga more accessible, but that responsibility is shared with the student, too. It becomes our collective responsibility, especially now after the sexual misconduct in the Ashtanga yoga community, to rethink the power dynamics between student and teacher.
What does this new yoga practice look like? And how will the guru evolve to meet students at equal footing? Because a student holds as much power on the yoga mat as a teacher, we now have the opportunity to share what we know and strengthen one another on our yoga journeys.
This is how I approach my practice and the way I teach yoga. In my recent interview with Yoga Alliance, I answer a few questions about my teaching career, but I don’t really think of myself as a yoga teacher. I am always, first and foremost, a yoga student. I love learning about this practice, its traditions, our lineage, and then sharing what I’ve learned with others who are just as passionate about their journey.
My recommendation to you and everyone out there listening who is eager to try Ashtanga yoga is – Spend as much time as a yoga student as possible. Immerse yourself in the experience and gobble up as much knowledge as you can. Yoga students hold the power of the practice because they are the ones who show up to class to put in the work. Without students, there is no yoga teacher, there is no guru, and there is no practice. The student’s journey is where the magic of yoga happens, and I hope to share some of what I know and shine a light ahead of you to help you on your journey.